tv [untitled] December 7, 2010 8:30am-9:00am PST
>> what if you could make a memorial that is more about information and you are never fixed and it can go wherever it wants to go? everyone who has donated to it could use it, host it, share it. >> for quite a great deal of team she was hired in 2005, she struggled with finding the correct and appropriate visual expression. >> it was a bench at one point. it was a darkened room at another point. but the theme always was a theme of how do we call people's attention to the issue of speci species extinction. >> many exhibits do make long detailed explanations about species decline and biology of birds and that is very useful for lots of purposes. but i think it is also important
to try to pull at the strings inside people. >> missing is not just about specific extinct or endangered species. it is about absence and a more fundamental level of not knowing what we are losing and we need to link species loss to habitat loss and really focuses much on the habitat. >> of course the overall mission of the academy has to do with two really fundamental and important questions. one of which is the nature of life. how did we get here? the second is the challenge of sustainability. if we are here how are we going to find a way to stay? these questions resonated very strongly with maya. >> on average a species disappears every 20 minutes.
this is the only media work that i have done. i might never do another one because i'm not a media artist per se but i have used the medium because it seemed to be the one that could allow me to convey the sounds and images here. memorials to me are different from artworks. they are artistic, but memorials have a function. >> it is a beautiful scupltural objective made with bronze and lined with red wood from water tanks in clear lake. that is the scupltural form that gives expression to maya's project. if you think about a cone or a bull horn, they are used to get the attention of the crowd, often to communicate an important message. this project has a very important message and it is
about our earth and what we are losing and what we are missing and what we don't even know is gone. >> so, what is missing is starting with an idea of loss, but in a funny way the shape of this cone is, whether you want to call it like the r.c.a. victor dog, it is listen to the earth and what if we could create a portal that could look at the past, the present and the future? >> you can change what is then missing by changing the software, by changing what is projected and missing. so, missing isn't a static installation. it is an installation that is going to grow and change over time. and she has worked to bring all of this information together from laboratory after laboratory including, fortunately, our great fwroup of researche e-- g researchers at the california academy. >> this couldn't have been more site specific to this place and we think just visually in terms of its scupltural form it really
holds its own against the architectural largest and grandeur of the building. it is an unusual compelling object. we think it will draw people out on the terrace, they will see the big cone and say what is that. then as they approach the cone tell hear these very unusual sounds that were obtained from the cornell orinthology lab. >> we have the largest recording of birds, mammals, frogs and insects and a huge library of videos. so this is an absolutely perfect opportunity for us to team up with a world renown, very creative inspirational artist and put the sounds and sights of the animals that we study into a brand-new context, a context that really allows people to appreciate an esthetic way of the idea that we might live in the world without these sounds
or sites. >> in the scientific realm it is shifting baselines. we get used to less and less, diminished expectations of what it was. >> when i came along lobsters six feet long and oysters 12 inches within they days all the oyster beds in new york, manhattan, the harbor would clean the water. so, just getting people to wake up to what was just literally there 200 years ago, 150 years ago. you see the object and say what is that. you come out and hear these intriguing sounds, sounds like i have never heard in my life. and then you step closer and you almost have a very intimate experience. >> we could link to different institutions around the globe, maybe one per continent, maybe two or three in this country, then once they are all networked, they begin to communicate with oneno